Bear in mind, those are averages. Don't be surprised if you are much worse off because of distributional skew (huge wage increases at the high end pull the average up).
Moreover, the above chart does not reflect sales taxes, property taxes, state income taxes, gasoline taxes, fees, etc., all of which are way higher now than in 2000. In other words, the chart reflects average hourly wages, not spendable income.
Actual spendable income is up far less than 44%.
It's a peculiar thing how the CPI does not properly account for tax hikes.
While pondering those thoughts, please consider federal spending.
The following table will show the purported "revenue problem" in Congress, is without a doubt really an "out of control spending problem".
|Department||2000||2012 estimate||Percentage Increase|
|Department of Agriculture||75,071||150,680||100.72|
|Department of Commerce||7,788||11,326||45.43|
|Department of Defense--Military Programs||281,028||688,254||144.91|
|Department of Education||33,476||98,467||194.14|
|Department of Energy||14,971||38,998||160.49|
|Department of Health and Human Services||382,311||871,836||128.04|
|Department of Homeland Security||13,159||60,443||359.33|
|Department of Housing and Urban Development||30,781||56,788||84.49|
|Department of the Interior||7,998||11,241||40.55|
|Department of Justice||16,846||34,556||105.13|
|Department of Labor||31,873||127,157||298.95|
|Department of State||6,687||29,937||347.69|
|Department of Transportation||41,555||84,135||102.47|
|Department of the Treasury||390,524||579,618||48.42|
|Department of Veterans Affairs||47,044||129,186||174.61|
|Corps of Engineers--Civil Works||4,229||9,184||117.17|
|Other Defense Civil Programs||32,801||51,991||58.50|
|Environmental Protection Agency||7,223||9,352||29.48|
|Executive Office of the President||283||414||46.29|
|General Services Administration||74||1,083||1363.51|
|International Assistance Programs||12,087||25,554||111.42|
|National Aeronautics and Space Administration||13,428||17,637||31.34|
|National Science Foundation||3,448||8,281||140.17|
|Office of Personnel Management||48,655||87,462||79.76|
|Small Business Administration||-421||3,157|
|Social Security Administration (On-Budget)||45,121||188,552||317.88|
|Social Security Administration (Off-Budget)||396,169||638,509||61.17|
|Other Independent Agencies (On-Budget)||8,803||53,199||504.33|
|Other Independent Agencies (Off-Budget)||2,029||-5,120|
|Undistributed Offsetting Receipts||-173,019||-279,289||61.42|
Hussman's Open Letter to the Fed; The Problem with Bubbles; Textbook Pre-Crash Bubble; Reflections on Not Chasing Bubbles; Integrity vs. Respect | Mike Shedlock